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Contract number
Time span of the project

As of 15.02.2021

Number of staff members
scientific publications
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General information

Name of the project: New functional of cell nucleus and complex resistivity of potato plants against diseases and physiological stresses

Strategy for Scientific and Technological Development Priority Level: г

Goals and objectives

Research directions: Molecular and applied plant virology, bacterial diseases of plants, mechanisms of resistivity of plants against stresses, functions of cell nucleus and subnuclear structures, genome technologies for potatoes

Project objective: Comprehensive study. development of approaches and identification of target genes for overcoming consequences of different stresses for growth, development and productivity of potatoes

The practical value of the study

As results of the project, the interactive response of potato plants to single and combined abiotic/biotic stress had been elucidated:

  1. Contrasting potato cultivars with different levels of resistance to potato virus Y (PVY) infection, heat stress and combined (PVY and heat) stress had been identified;
  2. We have demonstrated functional links between potato resistance to PVY and heat stress, and activation of salicylic acid (SA) - dependent defence pathways;
  3. We have discovered involvement of the nuclear proteins, fibrillarin and coilin, in SA-mediated pathways and plant responses to abiotic/biotic stress in potato plants;
  4. We have identified novel nuclear (such as PARP and Rab28) and non-nuclear proteins (more than 10 proteins) as potential targets controlling potato response to abiotic/biotic stress;
  5. Proteomic analysis (iTRAQ) of contrasting potato cultivars revealed differential expression of many proteins in response to combined abiotic/biotic stress;
  6. We have prepared a list of proteins up- and down-regulated by individual and combined abiotic/biotic stress, including potential gene targets.

Among proteins, mediated resistance to viruses and ecological stresses, we have identified a cluster of proteins involved in control of RNA metabolism and methylation. We have previously shown that the main enzymes of methione cycle (MTC) were down-regulated in PVY-infected Chicago (susceptible) plants at higher temperatures, causing consistent and concerted reduction in the levels of the major MTC metabolites including the universal methyl group donor SAM. This suggested that the enhanced susceptibility of Chicago potato plants to PVY at high temperatures may be triggered by the MTC perturbation and concomitant reduction in transmethylation activities. Remarkably, as in the case of Chicago, we revealed significant changes in expression of MTC and MTC-associated enzymes induced by PVY infection in resistant cv. Gala. However, in contrast to Chicago, with Gala plants the expression of a different set of enzymes was affected and this ultimately led to an increase in the levels of SAM and its immediate precursors MET and HCY. Thus, we suggest that resistance to PVY in potato cultivars may be positively regulated by intracellular amounts of MTC metabolites which determine the rate of methylation. These data not only point to important role of MTC in plant response to stress but allow to suggest a role of RNA metabolism (in particular non-coding RNAs) in the induction and regulation of plant resistance to viruses and abiotic stresses.

Implementation of research results:

The current project aims to develop scientific strategy for crop breeding in order to enhance plant adaptation to environmental stresses and avoid yield losses using biotechnological approaches. Although we are currently focusing on studies of potato responses to combined stresses caused by virus infections and elevated temperatures, our data on genes and mechanisms involved in stress tolerance as well as methodological approaches developed in our work will be applicable to other crops and abiotic/biotic stresses.

The laboratory collaborates with leading private enterprise, Doka Gene Technologies Ltd which produces seed and table potato as well as performs R&D in the area of potato genetics and breeding. Potato plants with enhanced resistance to stresses developed through this project are currently being tested in field trials at the DGT Ltd.

Education and retraining of personnel:

Postgraduate students, members of the research team underwent an internship at the James Hutton Institute (UK) in 2017 and 2018.

Two members of the research team prepared and successfully defended PhD thesis in 2020. Another PhD thesis is in preparation.


The Laboratory collaborates with the James Hutton Institute and the Moredun Researsh Institute (UK).

The Laboratory conducts research in close cooperation with Belozersky Institute of Physico-Chemical Biology, Biological and Physical Faculties of Lomonosov Moscow State University.

The Laboratory actively cooperates with the scientific departments of Doka-Gene Technology Ltd.

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Kalinina N.O., Makarova S., Makhotenko A., Love A.J., Taliansky M.
The Multiple Functions of the Nucleolus in Plant Development, Disease and Stress Responses. Frontiers in Plant Science 9: 132 (2018).
Ignatov A.N., Panycheva J.S., Spechenkova N., Taliansky M.
First Report of Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. sepedonicus Infecting Sugar Beet in Russia. Plant disease 102(12): 2634 (2018).
Makarova S., Makhotenko A., Spechenkova N., Love A.J., Kalinina N.O., Taliansky M.
Interactive Responses of Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) Plants to Heat Stress and Infection With Potato Virus Y. Frontiers in microbiology 9: 2582 (2018).
Ignatov A.N., Spechenkova N.A., Taliansky M., Kornev K.P.
First Report of Clavibacter michiganensis subsp. michiganensis Infecting Potato in Russia. Plant Disease 103(1): 147-147 (2019).
Mamaeva A, Taliansky M, Filippova A, Love AJ, Golub N, Fesenko I
(2020). The role of chloroplast protein remodeling in stress responses and shaping of the plant peptidome. New Phytol https://doi.org/10.1111/nph.1662010.1111/nph.16620
Sinitsyna OV, Kalinina NO, McGeachy K, Whale E, Hepworth D, Love AJ, Taliansky ME, Yaminsky IV
(2020). Interaction between nanocellulose and tobacco mosaic virus-like particles: an atomic force microscopy study. Cellulose (Lond)
Yang X, Lu Y, Wang F, Chen Y, Tian Y, Jiang L, Peng J, Zheng H, Lin L, Yan C, Taliansky M, MacFarlane S, Wu Y, Chen J, Yan F
(2019). Involvement of the chloroplast gene ferredoxin 1 in multiple responses of N. benthamiana to Potato virus X infection. J Exp Bot 71 (6), 2142–2156
Morozov SY, Solovyev AG, Kalinina NO, Taliansky ME
(2019). Double-Stranded RNAs in Plant Protection Against Pathogenic Organisms and Viruses in Agriculture. Acta Naturae 11 (4), 13–21
Kalinina NO, Khromov A, Love AJ, Taliansky M
(2019). CRISPR applications in plant virology: virus resistance and beyond. Phytopathology 110 (1), 18–28
Shaw J, Yu C, Makhotenko AV, Makarova SS, Love AJ, Kalinina NO, MacFarlane S, Jianping C, Taliansky ME
(2019). Interaction of a plant virus protein with the signature Cajal body protein coilin facilitates salicylic acid-mediated plant defence responses. New Phytol 224 (1), 439–453
Makhotenko AV, Khromov AV, Snigir EA, Makarova SS, Makarov VV, Suprunova TP, Kalinina NO, Taliansky ME
(2019). Functional Analysis of Coilin in Virus Resistance and Stress Tolerance of Potato Solanum tuberosum using CRISPR-Cas9 Editing. Dokl Biochem Biophys 484 (1), 88–91
Sinitsyna OV, Makarov VV, McGeachy K, Bukharova T, Whale E, Hepworth D, Yaminsky IV, Kalinina NO, Taliansky ME, Love AJ
(2019). Virus-Like Particle Facilitated Deposition of Hydroxyapatite Bone Mineral on Nanocellulose after Exposure to Phosphate and Calcium Precursors. Int J Mol Sci 20 (8)
Khromov AV, Makhotenko AV, Snigir EV, Makarova SS, Makarov VV, Suprunova TP, Miroshnichenko DN, Kalinina NO, Dolgov SV, Taliansky ME
(2018). Delivery of CRISPR / Cas 9 ribonucleoprotein complexto apical meristem cells for DNA-free editing of potato solanum tuberosum genome. Biotekhnologiya 34 (6), 51–58
Makarova SS, Khromov AV, Spechenkova NA, Taliansky ME, Kalinina NO
(2018). Application of the CRISPR/Cas System for Generation of Pathogen-Resistant Plants. Biochemistry (Mosc) 83 (12-13), 1552–1562
Khromov AV, Gushchin VA, Timerbaev VR, Kalinina NO, Taliansky ME, Makarov VV
(2018). Guide RNA Design for CRISPR/Cas9-Mediated Potato Genome Editing. Dokl Biochem Biophys 479 (1), 90–94
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